The term “overnight parking” the city is using to push a change in ordinance is misleading. This sounds like it would allow tired travelers from the Interstate to park temporarily. This also does not clarify that this change in ordinance would allow homeless people to sleep at Palmer Park 10 p.m. until 5 a.m. when it’s closed. The park opens at 5 a.m. every day to everyone. This means they don’t have to leave and would LIVE here 24 hours every day, indefinitely.
The standing-room-only crowd that filled City Hall June 26 was worried about the vulnerability of the park, not the homeless.
Five parks were considered. Then Palmer Park with the CAMDEN playground area was picked for this pilot program.
Why would somebody bring this idea to the table to put homeless in any city park?
Here are the real criteria: The city wants to remove the homeless population from the revitalized downtown without spending any money. It’s called “not in my new downtown.” If the city really wanted to help people, this would be near homeless services in the downtown. The other criteria brings us back to Palmer Park. It already has public bathrooms and a lit parking lot.
Instead of accommodating people breaking the law, why wouldn’t we enforce the law?
The solution shouldn’t be to put homeless at Traxler Park, Palmer Park, Rockport Park, Lustig Park or any other park. You will not solve a problem by moving it around. Don’t pretend to.